God Dethroned
The World Ablaze

After splitting in 2011/12, founder and lone remaining original member Henri Satler as well as long time drummer Michiel van der Plicht decided to reform the band. They are joined by veterans  Jeroen Pomper (Absorbed) and Mike Ferguson (Detonation), but even after 5 years and the new line up, the results are the same, reliable, consistent and enjoyable sound as you’d expect from God Dethroned.

Album number 10 sees the band continue the WWI theme delivered on 2009s Passiondale and 2012s Under the Sign of the Iron Cross, as Sattler really seems to have locked into a war metal sound and style that mixes melodic death metal, black metal and classic death metal. One subtle change is that the addition of Ferguson on lead guitar has added an increased melodic element that the band has always had, but seems really fleshed out with some superb, somber, harmonic lead work throughout.

After somber intro “A Call to Arms” (immediately showing Ferguson’s skill), “Annihilation Crusade”  which can only be termed as a classic God Dethroned track with a perfect mix of razor sharp blasts, big grooves and a nice lead melody line and chorus. The title track follows with more of the same with a really fucking nice melodic blast beat. The formula is pretty rigid for the rest of the album even if “On the Wrong Side of the Wire”, “Escape Across the Ice (The White Army)” and “Messina Ridge” slow things down to a more Bolt Thrower -ish rumble and “Konigsberg” is an acoustic interlude.

Admittedly, around the 8th or 9th track, the formula of “blast, melodic lead, chorus, slow groove, blast ” (sometimes in a different order) gets a bit predictable, but it does not stop tracks like “Close to Victory”, personal favorite “Breathing Through Blood”  and almost 7 minute doomier, somber closer “The 11th Hour” from being immensely  satisfying and done with a veteran  confidence and ease that Sattler can pen these songs in his sleep at this point.The Unisound/Dan Swano mix seems to have added a very slight Stockholm buzz to the already razor sharp tone, giving the album just that little more bite than the last few fine albums.

The World Ablaze is exactly what you’d expect from God Dethroned 10 albums in, even after a long hiatus. Im interested to see if they stay with WWI as their overarching theme or switch their reliable consistent sound to other conflicts. Either way, you will know exactly what you will be getting.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
May 8th, 2017

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